WHO Poll
Q: 2020/2021 Where will we finish up this season?
a. Top Four, Champions League here we come
b. 5th-7th Europa League is well within our grasp
c. 8th to 14th anywhere in mid table is about right
d. We're in a dog fight before a ball has been kicked and we'll do well to finish 17th or just above
e. GSB have derailed our season before a ball has been kicked, the Championship beckons

Alan 2:09 Fri Jan 3
Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Paul Pogba's Manchester United career is over with the club determined to sell him. Real Madrid could be the 26-year-old' midfielder's next destination, possibly with Toni Kroos, 29, going the other way. (Sun)

Manchester United have made Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish, 24, and Leicester and England midfielder James Maddison, 23, their top transfer targets for January. (Independent)

Juventus and Germany midfielder Emre Can, 25, and Newcastle midfielder Sean Longstaff, 22, are also being considered by Manchester United. (ESPN)

Manchester United are also keen on Norwich's 21-year-old playmaker Todd Cantwell, but face competition from Manchester City and Tottenham for the £30m-rated midfielder. (Mail)

Arsenal and Tottenham are both interested in Atletico Madrid's French international winger Thomas Lemar, 24. (Foot Mercato via Mirror)

West Ham are keen on signing 23-year-old Brazilian striker Gabigol from Inter Milan for £20m after he impressed on loan at Flamengo. (Sun)

Aston Villa are planning a loan move for Chelsea's Belgium striker Michy Batshuayi, 26, with a view to a permanent deal. (Footmercato - in French)

Aston Villa are also interested in Chelsea's France forward Olivier Giroud, 33. (Sun)

Arsenal lead the race to sign Juventus' 21-year-old centre back Merih Demiral. The Gunners hope a £42.5m bid will beat interest from Manchester United, AC Milan, Atletico Madrid and Schalke. (Fotomac via Sun)

Gabon forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 30, has outlined his commitment to Arsenal and cooled talk of a January exit. (Standard)

Arsenal have joined the January battle to sign Bournemouth and Netherlands defender Nathan Ake, 24. (Telegraph)

Inter Milan are one of several clubs to have contacted the representatives of Tottenham and Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen. The 27-year-old is out of contract in the summer. (Sky Sports)

Manchester City will offer a new one-year contract extension to Brazil midfielder Fernandinho, 34. (Sun)

Ajax have ruled out a move for Tottenham and Belgium defender Jan Vertonghen because the 32-year-old is too expensive. (De Telegraaf - in Dutch)

Chelsea have had a 40m euros (£34m) bid turned down for Lyon's 23-year-old French striker Moussa Dembele. (Footmercato - in French)

Aston Villa are considering making a bid for Stoke's England goalkeeper Jack Butland, 26. (Mail)

Southampton are interested in signing Real Valladolid's Ghanaian centre-back Mohammed Salisu, 20. (Sky Sports)

Leicester have moved ahead of Arsenal in the race to sign Juventus and Italy defender Daniele Rugani, 25. (Express)

West Ham have had an undisclosed bid rejected by Middlesbrough for their former goalkeeper Darren Randolph, the 32-year-old Republic of Ireland international. (Sky Sports)

Sheffield United are preparing a £17m move for Olympiakos and Guinea midfielder Mady Camara, 22. (SDNA, via Star)

Benfica are open to receiving offers for Portugal midfielder Gedson Fernandes. The 20-year-old is a target for Manchester United. (Sky Sports)

Fenerbahce sporting director Damien Comolli - formerly with Tottenham and Liverpool - has told Derby boss Phillip Cocu that Netherlands midfielder Ferdi Kadioglu, 20, is not available this month. (Fanatik, via Teamtalk)

Sunderland are among a trio of League One sides who have made a move to sign Bristol City's English winger Hakeeb Adelakun, 23, on loan this month. (Football Insider)

USA forward Christian Pulisic, 21, says Chelsea's squad are ready for the challenge of fresh competition should new signings arrive this month. (Evening Standard)

Brighton striker Glen Murray, 36, could leave the club to join Championship side Nottingham Forest. (Mirror)

Former Arsenal chief scout Steve Rowley is a candidate for West Ham to replace Mario Husillos as director of football. (Telegraph)

Alan Pardew wants to make Sheffield United's English midfielder Ravel Morrison, 26, his first signing at new club ADO Den Haag. (Sky Sports)

World players' union Fifpro has urged the game's authorities to address global fixture congestion following 53 different injuries in the Premier League's festive period. (Telegraph)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Scott Murray

God bless Manchester United, who are at least trying, if perhaps a little too hard. Here’s the list of midfielders they’re currently thinking about buying: Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish, Leicester City’s James Maddison, Newcastle United’s Sean Longstaff, Juventus’s Emre Can, Norwich City’s Todd Cantwell, Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos, and Widecombe Fair’s Old Tom Cobley.

Having said that, if they land Kroos, Paul Pogba will be sent packing the other way, so perhaps this is a more coherent and forensic rebuilding strategy than it appears at first glance after all.

Should Villa lose their star man, they’ll placate their fans by bringing in Olivier Giroud and Michy Batshuayi from Chelsea. They’re also thinking about a bid for Stoke keeper Jack Butland, with Tom Heaton injured.

Thomas Lemar, a regular of The Mill in 2018, is back, baby! The Atlético Madrid attacker is in the sights of both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.

Arsenal are also planning to bolster that defence, and who could blame them? Bournemouth’s Nathan Aké and Juventus pair Daniele Rugani and Merih Demiral are central to Mikel Arteta’s plans. However Leicester are hoping to win the race for Rugani.

Gabriel Barbosa has been banging them in for Flamengo, where he’s been playing on loan from Internazionale. West Ham United fancy the Brazilian striker, who trades under the nickname of Gabigol. Chelsea, in the wake of packing half of their frontline off to the second city, are also interested.

Finally, Nottingham Forest are hoping to snare the more prosaically titled Brighton striker Glenn Murray.


Former Arsenal chief scout Steve Rowley on West Ham's list to replace sacked director of football

Matt Law, Football News Correspondent

West Ham United are planning to replace sacked director of football Mario Husillos, with former Arsenal chief scout Steve Rowley among their early targets.

Husillos left West Ham with Manuel Pellegrini and the club want to replace him with a new man to take charge of transfer strategy and work closely with returning manager David Moyes.

Rowley, who was a close confidant of Arsene Wenger, is one of the leading names in the frame and is available after leaving Arsenal around two years ago.

It is believed 61-year-old Rowley also has interest from elsewhere in the Premier League and from overseas, and that he now feels the time is right to consider a role at a new club.

Before leaving Arsenal as part of a backroom overhaul, Rowley had spent more than 35 years associated with the Gunners and had earned a reputation as one of the most respected scouts in the Premier League.

It is unclear how quickly West Ham will attempt to replace Husillos, but Moyes will get a major say in the next appointment and has made it clear he is willing to work with a director of football or somebody in a similar role.

“No problem at all,” said Moyes. “I worked with one in Spain and working with a director of football is not a big problem. I think that the important thing is that we get the right person for the right reasons and we can work together. There is no problem with that at all.”

It is unclear how quickly West Ham will try to replace Husillos with the January transfer window open and the club already discussing possible targets.

Midfielder Joe Allen is a player Moyes wanted to sign for West Ham before he left 18 months ago, while goalkeeper Darren Randolph has been lined up for a possible return.

West Ham are also in the market for a new forward and have been offered Gabriel Barbosa, who has been on loan at Flamengo from Inter Milan.

Barbosa, who is nicknamed ‘Gabigol’, is thought to be available for around £16million and Moyes confirmed he has money to spend, saying: “I think there is money there to spend if we need it.”

Moyes has stressed that his main concern is getting the best out of the players already at West Ham, including England midfielder Declan Rice.

Rice had been struggling to reproduce his best form over recent weeks, but put in an excellent display in the first game of the new Moyes era, a 4-0 thrashing of Bournemouth.

The 20-year-old revealed that he received the hairdryer treatment from Moyes during his last spell at the club and is expecting more of the same from the Scot this time around.

“I made a mistake at Arsenal when I ducked for the ball and missed a header, and it went in,” said Rice. “It was 1-1 at the time and I got out of the way of the ball, and afterwards he came for me in the changing room in front of the lads.

“Yeah, it was the hairdryer treatment. But I took it well and I think he wanted to see how I reacted to it. I went on to play every game for the rest of the season because I took it on the chin, kept working hard, kept working on my heading that season and, luckily enough, that mistake didn’t happen again.

“I was only young then, but it was rightly deserved. If I am old enough to play in the team, I am old enough to take it and that is the same now even though I am still 20. If he gives me criticism, you have got to take it on the chin because he is only doing it because he wants to help. I think that is the way forward and what we are all looking forward to.”

Describing what Moyes has already demanded from the squad since returning to West Ham last week, Rice added: “The first meeting we had was 10.30am the day he came in. He just got us all together, all the staff in the room and said ‘one thing I expect is if you don’t run, you don’t play’ and that was his policy last time.

“I think that is what you need to be honest. If you look at what Nigel Pearson has done at Watford since he has come in as well and that is what Moyes is like. He’s old school, but I think that is what you need, we needed that, we were getting too sloppy.”


West Ham finally agree new deal with highly-rated midfielder Conor Coventry

• 19-year-old to sign new deal at London Stadium
• Player expected to be loaned to League One club

Jacob Steinberg

West Ham have underlined their determination not to lose their best young talents after finally agreeing a new deal with Conor Coventry, who was out of contract out in the summer and a target for a number of clubs this month.

Talks with Coventry have been going on since the start of the season and West Ham had grown concerned that they would lose the midfielder, with clubs in the Championship and abroad expressing an interest in the 19-year-old. Frustration had mounted on both sides of the negotiating table and the stand-off had raised the prospect of the London Stadium being forced to cash in on one of their most promising youngsters during the January transfer window or risk him signing a pre-contract with a foreign side before departing in the summer.

Coventry would have been available on a free transfer at the end of the season but an agreement was reached after a breakthrough in negotiations in the last month. He is set to sign a three-and-a-half-year deal, which contains an option of a one-year extension.

Coventry, who has made two substitute appearances for West Ham in the League Cup and been included on the bench for a handful of Premier League games, is now likely to be loaned out to gain experience of first-team football for the rest of the season. A move to a League One side seen as his best chance of playing regularly. The teenager, who has been at West Ham since he was 10, is a Republic of Ireland Under-21 international and he displayed his potential when he was named man of the match in a 0-0 draw against Italy last October.

Meanwhile, West Ham are unlikely to recall Grady Diangana from his loan spell at West Bromwich Albion this month. The winger has excelled for West Brom, who are chasing automatic promotion to the Premier League, and there is a feeling on all sides that the 21-year-old is benefiting from playing regularly at the Hawthorns. It is thought that David Moyes, who replaced Manuel Pellegrini as West Ham’s manager last weekend, will only bring Diangana back if he loses players to injury or suffers a run of defeats before the window shuts.


Gedson Fernandes: West Ham in talks with midfielder also linked to Manchester United

West Ham are in talks with Benfica over the signing of midfielder Gedson Fernandes, Sky Sports News understands.

Discussions are underway over a possible 18-month loan deal which would include an option to buy, with David Moyes looking to make his first signing since returning to the club last weekend.

Fernandes, who has also been linked with Manchester United, favours a move to the Premier League and his preferred destination is the London Stadium because of family reasons.

Speculation over West Ham and their potential interest in the 20-year-old peaked on Thursday evening when he added West Ham's 'Irons' emoji to his name on an Instagram post.

His representatives are understood to have already spoken to multiple Premier League clubs about the twice-capped Portugal international.

Fernandes' release clause is £102m but Benfica have conceded they will not get close to that figure for a player who is out of favour and is reported to have fallen out with head coach Bruno Lage.

Lyon and AC Milan have made formal offers for the player, who came through Benfica's famed academy system and made his debut for their first team as a teenager.

Sport Witness

West Ham officials to travel – Hammers to make formal offer for player – Transfer being pushed

West Ham United have scheduled a meeting for the signing of Benfica midfielder Gedson Fernandes, according to reports from Portugal today.

Newspaper Record says the Hammers will be in Lisbon next week and will make a formal offer to take the 20-year-old to England.

The Premier League side will be putting on the table a loan deal with an option to buy the player, which will include some performance goals for it to be automatically triggered.

Record says the bid is good for the midfielder, who would have the chance to have a bigger salary at West Ham than he does at Benfica.

It’s claimed Benfica president Luis Felipe Vieira is aware of West Ham’s intentions and there could be a deal after this meeting in Lisbon. Both the Portuguese club and the player want the situation to be sorted out as soon as possible, and West Ham are the best positioned club to take him.

There are two other factors that could make things easier for the Hammers.

Firstly, Gedson’s parents live in London, so he would be closer to them. And it’s also claimed that Unique Sports Management have been handling exit talks. They’re based in London, and according to Record, they have the player’s approval to close a deal next week.


Former West Ham striker Diafra Sakho released by Rennes

The French Ligue 1 club and the Senegal international agreed to end their working relationship

Ligue 1 club Rennes have announced the termination of Diafra Sakho's contract, six months before its expiry.

Sakho moved to the Roazhon Park from West Ham United a two-and-a-half-year deal in January 2018 and went on to score three goals in 16 matches across all competitions.

The 30-year-old could not secure a regular spot in Julien Stephan's team and was loaned to Turkish Super Lig club Bursaspor in August 2018 where he spent the entire 2018-19 campaign.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

RM10 12:19 Sat Jan 4
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Worries me that Brady wants to model West Ham like ARsenal

ted fenton 11:23 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 2:19 Fri Jan 3

jakehammer 10:56 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
spot on Athletico, Mr wendel is definitely a genuine itk as far as i can see, in fact he's the Beez fucking Kneez.

Steven P 8:27 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
I didn’t think we were taking any outsiders in? Especially from that cunt site. You cunts?

Mex Martillo 4:30 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 2:19 Fri Jan 3
Good you got over your stutter.
Dandy, The way you handled Branded would suggest you should have been here a long time ago.

Eerie Descent 2:56 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Attention seeking cunt.

Did you get booted off KUMB for being straight?

Dandy Lyon 2:52 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
I've been reading for a while and am aware of the need for thick skin and ability to abuse anyone and everyone.

I reckon I'll be ok.

JonWHUFC 2:49 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Lyon, welcome to WHO. You will fit right in if you can manage to argue on every thread with just about every other poster and chuck in some veiled half hearted threats of violence. Football knowledge is not actually necessary and it doesn't matter if you don't know the words to Bubbles as long as you like popcorn. Any problems with the site please wipe your knob on the screen first before asking for help. Cheers and great to have you on board me old china.

Athletico Easthamico 2:45 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Mr Wendel is the itk.

You cardigan wearing cunt.😁😁

Dandy Lyon 2:42 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Far Cough yes.

Quite a while ago I called out a poster on there claiming to be one of these 'in the know' types.

Clearly reposting rumours from Twitter and rarely being right.

Quite a few have gone for similar reasons.

Thanks Branded. Appreciate the welcome.

Thanks Alan for hiding my wrong post

BRANDED 2:35 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Fuck of Lyon you cunt.


Far Cough 2:33 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Why did you get booted, did you have the temerity to disagree with the site's lackeys?

Thanks Alan

Alan 2:31 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Welcome to the asylum, Mr Lyon

Dandy Lyon 2:24 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
I've read the site for a while, ever since getting booted of Knees Up Mother Brown (KUMB) and thought it about time I registered.

Seeing as the newspaper posts are so useful, it's only right my first post is a reply on your article Alan.

Thanks for doing this every day.

Thanks Alan 2:19 Fri Jan 3
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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